The Revocable Trust is the most common trust used in estate planning. The Trust is created by the Grantor or Settlor, who will likely choose to serve as the initial Trustee of the Trust. The Trustee is responsible for the day to day management of the Trust investments and property. As the initial Trustee, the Grantor can add or remove assets from the Trust during her lifetime and for her own benefit. Money can be taken out in any quantity, and the Trust can be revoked or amended by the Grantor during her life so long as she has capacity. Trusts can avoid probate if they are properly funded. This means that assets in the name of the Grantor must be re-titled into the name of the Trust. If you have a Trust, you still need to have a Will. A Will ensures that any assets without a beneficiary designation at the time of the Grantor’s death will “pour over” into the Trust to be distributed according to the terms of the Trust. Some assets should not be re-titled into the name of the Trust, which is why it is important that you speak with an estate planning attorney to determine whether you need a Revocable Trust, and if you do, which assets should fund it.
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